Putin right about Syria; Obama was Wrong

What a difference a year makes. Around this time last year, the West was gearing up for military action against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. That intervention never came to pass as Russia President Putin negotiated a more peaceful resolution.Obama-putin-300x184

Now under pressure Obama is contemplating airstrikes on Islamic State militants operating in Iraq and in Syria, these are the same fighters belonging to a terrorist organization that is leading the war against Assad that Obama supported last year along with others like John McCain, so embarrassing for McCain ISIS posted a picture on their facebook page of them with senator McCain last year.

The Islamic State’s territorial gains in Iraq and continued repression and slaughter of religious minorities there and in Syria have rightly triggered global condemnation. “I am no apologist for the Assad regime,” Ryan Crocker, a former U.S. ambassador to Syria, said. “But in terms of our security, the Islamic State is by far the greatest threat.”

The irony of the moment is tragic. But to some, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise. Many cautioned against the earlier insistence of the Obama administration (as well as other governments) that Assad must go, fearing what would take hold in the vacuum.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who warned Obama against U.S. intervention in Syria in a New York Times op-ed last September. He wrote:

“A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.”

Putin’s insistence was couched in a reading of the conflict in Syria that’s more cold-blooded than the view initially held by some in Washington. “Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country,” Putin wrote, suggesting that the nominally secular Assad regime, despite its misdeeds, was a stabilizing force preferable to what could possibly replace it.

Putin decried the growing Islamist cadres in the Syrian rebels’ ranks:

“Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria?”

That’s a concern very publicly shared now by U.S. and European officials, who are alarmed by the considerable presence of European nationals among the Islamic State’s forces. A British jihadist who spoke with a London accent is believed to have carried out the shocking execution of American journalist James Foley this week.

That Western attention has shifted so dramatically from the murders carried out by the Assad regime to those carried out by the militants fighting it is a sign of the overwhelming complexity of the war, which is collapsing borders and shaking up politics in countries across the Middle East.

It’s worth considering what Putin’s government insisted not long after the violence began. In his New York Times op-ed, Putin reminded readers that from “the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future.” That “plan for the future,” the Russians insisted, had to involve negotiation and talks between the government and the opposition, something which the opposition rejected totally at the time.

In November 2011, Putin’s foreign minister Sergei Lavrov criticized other foreign powers, including the United States, for not helping pressure opposition forces to come to the table with the Assad regime. “We feel the responsibility to make everything possible to initiate an internal dialogue in Syria,” Lavrov said at a meeting of APEC foreign ministers in Hawaii.

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4 Comments

  1. Where Vladimir Putin is concerned, Obama would compromise the United States by reacting as a contrarian to what ever foreign policy moves Putin makes. It’s not because Obama has better logic, it’s been proved that Putin trumps Obama’s every move. This is the rub for Obama, his arrogance and self-love have been so injured by Putin on a personal basis, that Obama can’t see beyond that defect where the real interests of United States actually exist. He never focuses upon interests for the USA, it’s always about Obama’s inability to deal as an equal to Putin, because Putin understands Obama as an inferior who is not a leader. Many Americans feel the same way now, Obama has been a record-breaking failure as an American President in the history of the United States presidencies.
    The fact is, Putin simply bests Obama in all foreign policy departments, he has keen abilities to do for Russia and the Russian people, that which Obama lacks ability to do for the USA. It is no wonder that Putin enjoys approximately 85% reliability to Russians, while Obama’s poll numbers waver in the 30% region with Americans, including even many from his own Democrat Party. They are finally coming to realize how lawless Obama has been regarding the U.S. Constitution, and how his frivolity and adolescent self-indulgence have served only Obama and cronies, but not the people of the United States or its historic allies.

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  2. Pingback: Angry McCain Admits Meeting With ISIS, Refuses Facts on Fox News | The Conservative Papers

  3. But Obama and the Saudis did wreak vengeance of Russia for his NYT article and refusal to support the Iraqisation of Ukraine by escalating the Clintonian Cold War against Russia by downing MH-17 to unite Europe is self punishing sdanctions against Russia.

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  4. Putin was right all along and the US was always wrong. BUT, Obama and the Saudis did wreak vengeance on Russia for his NYT article and refusal to support the Iraqisation of Ukraine by escalating the Clintonian Cold War against Russia through downing MH-17 to unite Europe is self punishing sanctions against Russia.

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